Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey speaks during an interview with The Associated Press at the Pentagon in Washington, June 24, 2015. (AP/Susan Walsh)
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Nine were Army generals, four were Navy admirals, four were from the Air Force and one was a Marine.The commandant of the Marine Corps sailed through his confirmation hearing Thursday and is expected to take over Oct. 1 for Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, who will retire after a 41-year Army career.The chairman is the public face of the military, but he is not in the formal chain of command linking the president to his commanders in the field. Dempsey, who is completing four years in the job, has said it reminds him of entering the Army as a lowly second lieutenant.By law, the chairman presides over the Joint Chiefs of Staff – the top officers of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps, and since 2012, the National Guard.Dempsey says the chairman is supposed to be an adviser, not an advocate for any particular strategy or policy that the president may be considering.
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